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New health professions facility gives Lebanon Valley College students new tools to learn

ANNVILLE TOWNSHIP, LEBANON COUNTY, Pa. --- Health profession students at Lebanon Valley College are getting the tools to take classroom experiences into real world situations.

This summer, the Arnold Health Profession Pavilion at Lebanon Valley College opened on campus.

One of the labs includes “moulage” training, or creating fake injuries to gets students comfortable with not only healing a physical wound but handling emotions that come with it.

“Learning is more than just writing and reading. It’s also the emotional aspects, especially in the field of athletic training where you’re going to have to react to a situation,” said Eva Frank, assistant professor of Athletic Training at Lebanon Valley College.

Preparations for students goes further than a severe cut on the face.

Tools are also available to help students train for more serious injuries, such as neck or spine injuries.

Students practice with a flat back board: learning how to adjusting the patient to avoid injuring the patient any further.

They also have access to a state-of-the-art vacuum back board that blows up with an air pump.

It conforms around the patient's body with the aim of giving the patient a better sense of comfort.

Erin Ulrich, clinic education coordinator of athletic training at LVC, said the key to this classroom training is to get everyone on the same page, knowing where to go with fluidity and quickness.

She said translating it to the real world can be rare.

“We might spine board someone a few times a year so it’s really important that we get a lot of practice. So not only is it important for the students to practice but it’s important for certified trainers to practice and it’s important to practice with your local EMTs,” said Ulrich.

Injury prevention comes in the human performance lab of the Arnold Pavilion.

One example: reflective markers are placed around the body, including knees, elbows, and wrists.

Infrared cameras will read movements, such as swinging a baseball bat…

“The computer picks up the reflection and this dot is in space and each camera picks up that dot in space and the system basically sees dots. And with the software we use, we connect those dots,” said Dr. Georgios Stylianides, Director of the Human Performance Lab at LVC.

An animation of the human skeleton is created through the dots, similar to how characters are created in movies or video games.

Here, a bio-mechanic can help an athlete, coach or physician find problems spots in athletic motions that can lead to injury.

“We can see how much your knees bend, how much your elbows bend, how fast you assumed a certain position, how slow and so on,” said Dr. Stylianides.

It’s purpose goes further than safely trying to swing at a 95 mile per hour fastball.

Simply walking on force plates that act as sophisticated weight scales can show how the body reacts to the ground.

Imaging can identify disabilities or injuries that can help with rehabilitation or further prevention.

Also EMG sensors, or electromyography, can send back information on how specific muscles react to certain movements and if they’re susceptible to injury.

Add those three methods together and a computer generated model shows what needs to be known about the athlete’s body.

“When I did the 2D, I was so excited…Wow! Look at this, right? Now it’s 3D and because it went progressively, I don’t think I can ever think about it how it’s going to go,” said Dr. Stylianides.

For more information on the Arnold Health Profession Pavilion at Lebanon Valley College, follow the link here.